Online Publishing Book Reviews: We Blog – Publishing Online with Weblogs by Paul Bausch

Note: This review is part of our Top 20 Online Publishing Books to Read in 2009 series.

Why should you incorporate blogging into your online publishing strategy?

Let’s face it, blogs are a popular way to get a message out quickly and publicly. The question is: How can your business benefit from this form of online publishing? To answer this question, we offer some words from the interesting book, We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs by Paul Bausch, Matthew Haughey, and Meg Hourihan.

It raises some interesting questions such as ‘Why People Blog?’ and maybe more importantly, ‘Why People Read Blogs?’

You might be surprised by the answers.

Granted, while blogs started as a personal platform, a soapbox if you will, they evolved into so much more. Nowadays, businesses are catching on that people, customers, like to blog and read others blogs.

Online publishing via weblogs can do a lot to promote and increase your website traffic. So what’s the difference between personal and business blogging?

Personal Blogs. There really are no rules when it comes to blogging, but this book does give a few guidelines you’d be wise to follow before setting up a personal weblog.

First, privacy is paramount. Decide how anonymous you want to be. Will you use real names or screen names? Will you include a physical address or phone number on the site?

Second, determine appropriate topics and language expected. Then, stick to it! A blog full of foul language will turn a large portion of your audience away. Keep in mind that not only peers and colleagues may read your blog, but so can potential employers or business partners.

Third, how much interaction from others will be allowed? You can set up an email for audience replies, the good, the bad and the ugly.

Lastly, how often do you update your blog? For some, once a day, once week, maybe once a month.

Whatever you decide, be consistent, your audience will expect new blogs according to the schedule you set. Find a schedule that works well for you, so you that you enjoy writing and continue publishing online. These guidelines also apply to business blogs, but the purpose changes.

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Business Blogs.  Here is where things get exciting. Initially, business blogs were used to improve the quality and utility of the site for customers. Key use of business blogs today include:

  • introduce a new product
  • feature a favorable news clip
  • share testimonials
  • update company information
  • announce upcoming events

More importantly, they allow users to feel connected, part of a community.

We agree with the authors on this point: “The three elements of blogging are frequency, brevity, and personality…These can transform a static brochureware site into a freshly updated, resource for customers and consumers.”

Keeping these points in mind, blogging can be a successful form of online publishing, easily incorporated into your website. Happy blogging!

For more, read We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs by Paul Bausch, Matthew Haughey, and Meg Hourihan.


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